Monday, August 30, 2010

A few Writing Tips I'd Like To Pass On

I am going to try, once a week, to pass on some of the information I have learned since I got into this writing gig. So today here are some useful resources that were recommended to me, and are pretty common to all writers.

1) Read Stephen King's "On writing"- There are lot's of so-called experts willing to provide advice, but I and thousands or writer's seem to agree that this is a must read.

2) Join a writer's discussion forum- There are many, but Absolute Write & Writer's Digest seem to be the sites that most writer's use. You can follow along "anonymously" and learn, or you can join and participate when ready.

3) Read, Read, Read, especially the genre you want to write in.

4) Most authors have blogs. If you have a favorite author, check out and follow their blog.

5) Take a peek at Elmore Leonards "10 Rules of Writing" It is online and again, it is hard to find a writer who has not read and endorsed these.

That's it for today. Thanks for stopping by and be sure to check back next week as I'll be having a little contest where you can win a free print version of "Mindjacker".

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Sean and the Beanstock

So, on vacation this week, and instead of riding tasty waves at the beach all week like we planned, the foul weather here in Mass has turned the vaca into a game of how much me and the kids can drive the wife shytehouse. It is like being stuck in the friggin' Gulag. I decide to go to Barnes and Noble with my son to buy IMPERIAL BEDROOMS, the follow-up to LESS THAN ZERO by Bret Easton Ellis, which lists at $24.99 for a scant 200 pages (ouch, the price of blow & Cristal must have gone up).

To make a long story short, I sneak a peek at the NOOK just to see if my novel shows up on it. It did, so that was pretty cool. I end up talking to the saleslady, and you guessed it, bought one. I don't know squat about e-readers, but I ended up figuring how to use it, and downloaded the Ellis novel for $9.99

It is a pretty cool device and I can browse the web, listen to tunes, and it has 3G, which my son (10 years old) and the saleslady were nice enough to tell me what that means (it's a good thing).

So, needless to say I had some explaining to do when I got home. I did save $15.00 on the novel, so I'm only down $310.00 (Nook 3G= 199.00, protection case= 35.00, screen protector= 15.00, and warranty= 70.00)

Anyway, looking forward to reading what happened to the LESS THAN ZERO characters and I'll report back on that and my experience with the Nook.

* All was not lost as the saleslady purchased & downloaded a copy of MINDJACKER to her Nook and told me she'll pump it up the rest of the day on the demo Nook with customers, which was pretty cool of her.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010


I have been a fan of the DEXTER series on Showtime since it's debut. I decided to read the novel that it is based on, DARKLY DREAMING DEXTER by Jeff Lindsay. I really wish I had read the novel first, because I would have been blown away by it. The Showtime series, at least season one, stayed pretty true to the novel, with a few exceptions that I won't go into so as not to spoil it for anyone.

The best thing about DDD is Lindsay's writing style. It is a first person POV and as much as I enjoy the TV narration, it comes across so much better in the novel. JL has a talent and wit that translates into many laughs during the course of the novel.

I will start on the next DEXTER novel, when time permits.

Overall, If you have not seen the Showtime series, you are in for a great ride with DDD. Even if you have, it is still a worthwhile read. Like a lot of novels, DDD does require that you suspend your belief system just a bit, but it's fiction and it very entertaining.

Sunday, August 22, 2010


The next stop on my journey of crime writers has lead me to John Connolly. Yes, I am late to the game, but for me it is all about the thrill of discovery that keeps me wanting more. EDT is about 400 pages, which in itself, is about 100 pages more than most of the stuff I have read over the last 9 months. For me, this is an instant red flag that I might be skipping some passages, but in this case it did not apply. Although, I could have done without so many "like" and "as if" comparisons, but that is just me.

This is a very good story. Most impressive to me, is that it was JC's debut novel and the history of how EDT eventually went on to be published.

EDT has one of the best openings I have read in a long time. I hate spoilers, so I will only reveal that EDT follows ex-cop Charlie "Bird" Parker as he avenges the death of some loved ones. It takes place in New York and Louisiana. JC is a stickler for facts and details and I learned a lot about numerous subjects during the story.

Two minor details I noticed, and I'm thinking this might be old news but..

-In one scene, Parker refers to sneakers as "trainers" and vacation as "holiday". Parker is from the U.S. and I don't think he would have used these terms.

JC has gone on to be famous, but my sense is that he is still a pretty Regular Joe.

Anyway, I highly recommend EVERY DEAD THING and will certainly be reading more of John Connolly's work.